Meeting with a psychologist for the first time ever, or making an appointment to see a psychologist you have never met before, can be a bit daunting.
So many questions will likely run through your mind:
- What can I expect?
- What are they going to be like?
- What are they going to ask for?
- What if I don’t want to tell them about a few things now?
First, good on you for making your mental health a priority!
Recognising and accepting that we need help and could potentially benefit from some support is not always easy.
Maybe you are thinking that you don’t really want to talk to anyone about your difficulties and your parents or school are the ones asking for you to get some help, even if you are far from being convinced. That’s okay, we can talk about that. I am not here to judge you in anyway, I am here to offer support, guidance and treatment.
I have met with many children, teenagers and families over the past 20 years and something I often talk about with people is: “Why pretend that you are doing great if you are struggling?”, and “Why do it on your own?”.
Just like you see a health professional for your teeth, braces, skin, sport injuries and other issues – why not see a psychologist when life is getting complicated and your mental health and wellbeing are declining?
What to Expect at the First Appointment
When you come to your first appointment with me, the first thing I want is for you to feel comfortable.
There is no rush. You do not have to talk to me about things you don’t want to, we can take our time, get to know each other. This is actually a very important part of therapy as research shows that a good relationship with your therapist, also known as ‘therapeutic alliance’, is really important for the best therapeutic outcome.
While I will explain a few things to you during the first appointment (eg who I am, where I am from, the number of sessions available on your Mental Health Care Plan if you have one, the length of sessions, confidentiality, possible reasons for breaching confidentiality, what is consent), I am also very happy for you to ask me some questions if you have any.
You will also see me take notes during the consultations. These notes will enable me to review and reflect on what was said, to make sure I have a good understanding of what you are going through and how you are feeling; in order to then consider the best way forward.
It will usually take a few appointments for us to get to know each other a bit better and for me to be able to have a clearer direction on how to best support you.
If for any kind of reasons, we do not ‘click’ (eg I look like one of your teachers, or remind you of someone you had a bad experience with) and you do not feel that I am the best fit for you, it is fine, I will not be offended. For therapy to work, you need to feel comfortable and understood by your therapist, you need to know that you can talk to me without fear of judgment.
Remember that it is about you and your wellbeing first, and that talking to someone you do not really like, whatever the reason is, is not going to be easy. Trust and connection between you and your therapist are paramount.
If you believe I might be the right person for you, you can book online or call to make an appointment using the details below.
Author: Meggy Delaunay, PG Dip Psych Practice, PG Dip Dev Psych, M Genetic Psych, B Psych, MAPS.
Meggy Delaunay is a psychologist who primarily works with children, adolescents and young adults. She is a registered Psychologist in Australia, New Zealand and France, and can provide therapy sessions in English and French.
To make an appointment try Online Booking. Alternatively, you can call Vision Psychology Brisbane on (07) 3088 5422.